What is the best way (cheapest, quickest) from Narita Airport to Tsukuba?

  • Extended rationale for reopening this question: travel.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/241/… – lambshaanxy Nov 21 '18 at 15:26
  • @jpatokal The edit sounds opinion-based but, since your answer makes clear that there's only one sane opinion, I've voted to reopen. (After posting my comment, I made an edit to fix spelling mistakes; my comment isn't a coy way of referring to my own edit.) – David Richerby Nov 21 '18 at 17:17

There's actually only one sane way to make this trip: take the direct bus from the airport to Tsukuba for 2200 yen. Buses run hourly and take ~60 minutes, schedules here: http://pfwww.kek.jp/users_info/access/busnrte.html

All other options either involve a massive detour via Tokyo, doubling the travel time, or are wildly expensive (taxi).

  • 1
    I'm not sure it's so clearcut. Plugging Narita->Tsukuba into Google Maps shows the direct bus taking 1:15 and costing 2370 yen. Taking the train to Minami-Nagareyama Station and taking the bus from there takes 1:34 and costs 1894 yen. Since there's only one express bus per hour, it can end up taking longer too; I happened to choose 2:00pm as the departure time, and the train/bus combo arrives 20 minutes before the direct bus due to the latter not leaving until 2:45. That said, for a tired foreign traveler, the simplest option probably trumps a few hundred yen here and a few minutes there. – Gene Nov 21 '18 at 19:18
  • Yes, this is a gross oversimplification. Firstly, the bus takes between 65 and 80 minutes, not 60, and is not obviously better than what one gets by simply searching Narita to Tsukuba on Hyperdia (no transfer, but more expensive). It is also false that the train requires going through Tokyo. – fkraiem Nov 28 '18 at 4:17

There actually is another (but less sane) way to travel, and is preferable if you want to avoid the bus. Here it is:

  • Keisei Sky Access Line to Higashi-Matsudo;

  • JR Musashino Line to Minami-Nagayama;

  • Tsukuba Express to Tsukuba.

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